Photo by https://www.flickr.com/photos/smartsignbrooklyn/“Don’t ever call me” and Other PR Tips From Reporters Joel Andren Pitching 6 Comments PR people, please PLEASE PLEASE stop “calling to follow up on an email” PLEASE — Jordan Crook (@jordanrcrook) February 4, 2014 if you feel you can walk the line between annoying and effective, listen up http://t.co/YpQ57SiwXk — Jordan Crook (@jordanrcrook) March 4, 2014 In our short month since launch, we’ve talked with over 250 entrepreneurs about press outreach and we’ve shared with with them our simple approach. We’ve also told them we DO have some hard and fast rules about press outreach that go beyond PR tips and that we will release them as customers if they violate them. Rule #1: No Phone Calls Calls working journalist at 4:30 — Is now a good time? — Michael Learmonth (@learmonth) January 30, 2014 Least effective PR tactic: Leave entire 2-minute pitch on voicemail. — Matt Rosoff (@MattRosoff) January 21, 2014 PR people: If your boss tells you to “follow up” on a pitch with a phone call your boss is 100% wrong. — Steve Kovach (@stevekovach) November 8, 2013 ‘Don’t call. You can email, but if I don’t respond it’s because I’m not interested. The ONLY time you should call is if I call you first.’ — Ryan Lawler (@ryanlawler) November 12, 2013 Rule #2: Don’t @Reply, DM or PM or INMail @sarahcuda Hi, Sarah! What number can I dial to contact someone @ Mashable Brand Lab? — Rocio del Moral (@rodelmo) November 22, 2013 @sarahcuda It’s me again! #weirdtweetsoftheday how can we get in touch to publish a piece on PandoDaily for a client of ours? — Rocio del Moral (@rodelmo) November 23, 2013 GO AWAY RT @roelandp: @ryanlawler im starting this bitcoin exchange site, let me tell you about it: — Ryan Lawler (@ryanlawler) November 12, 2013 ugh someone just DM pitched me — ಠ_ಠ (@MikeIsaac) October 15, 2013 Rule #3: Give Email Time in case you’re wondering, no i haven’t read your email. and i probably won’t until late tonight/tom. use smoke signals instead. — Sarah Perez (@sarahintampa) January 22, 2014 certain exceptions). It works, but it doesn’t work immediately. Always leave enough time before your announcement to email the reporter and have one follow-up. One follow-up should suffice. We may be less aggressive in our approach than others, but we aim to be as respectful as possible and live up to our name and be “press friendly.” Remember, as a founder you want to build relationships with reporters so that they’ll cover you as your company grows. A little respect can go a long way. me: feel free to send details. email #1: here you go! email #2, hours later: did you get it??? email #3: hey, did you get it?? — me: uggghh — Sarah Perez (@sarahintampa) December 3, 2013 Hey, PR folks: If I don’t cover your product the first couple of times you email me, chances are I’m going to ignore your 30 followups too. — Peter Cohen (@flargh) August 13, 2013 Rule #4: No mass emails A new low for clueless PR: Calling to follow up on unsolicited, bulk email sent an hour previously. — Tom Simonite (@tsimonite) October 18, 2013 PressFriendly does not let its customers spray and pray. We purposely create smaller email lists than other lists providers. Our average list is about 30-40 publications with multiple reporters at some publications. The reason that so many people send mass emails is that they don’t know who’s interested in the story. Probably the best thing about PressFriendly is that we use machine learning to match the pitch to the right reporter using their reporter archives. So we’re providing media lists that don’t waste the time of founders and reporters. By promoting a few simple rules for press outreach, we hope to make life a little simpler and saner for reporters. We hope that in kind, they respect our approach and look kindly upon founders who respect their time and email them with tailored pitches. 6 Responses Amy Alkon March 6, 2014 “PressFriendly does not let its customers spray and pray. We purposely create smaller email lists than other lists providers. Our average list is about 30-40 publications with multiple reporters at some publications.” This is what’s called professional public relations. It’s truly appreciated. There are a handful of publicity people who pitch me things I can use, which are behavioral science-based books. The rest of the publicity I get is basically spam about things I will never write about: celebrities, restaurants, astrologers, etc. Reply Brett Rossi March 7, 2014 Can I have your consent to blog this on twitter? Reply Joel Andren March 7, 2014 Of course. Reply Bruce Coulter March 8, 2014 This article hits a home run. I can’t count the number of times I get a pitch followed by multiple calls. Ugh! Reply Vicky Sidler June 5, 2015 Great article! Left off this list: Don’t email me pretending to be a reader who just happened to see something cool that you think I’d like. I can tell it’s PR. Reply Three Obvious Mistakes PR People Keep Making Every Day - Synergy Capital July 31, 2017 […] but I don’t know why you keep doing this. Reporters despise it. This isn’t a drill. They hate it. Stop it. 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